JUST TWO WEEKS AGO: “Trump Caves to Drug Industry; Long-Delayed Executive Order Another Broken Promise to Patients”

NOW: “Health officials scramble to explain details of Trump’s $200 drug discount card”

Watchdog group on Trump cards: “latest desperate attempt to distract from the fact that his Administration has broken every promise they’ve made on this issue for the past four years”

Washington, DC – Today, Accountable Pharma released the following statement following the Trump Administration’s announcement that they will be sending $200 “prescription drug discount cards” to Medicare recipients in advance of the election and subsequent reporting that the plan may not pass legal muster and may not actually be implemented at all.

“Throwing a one-time $200 gift card at the seniors and families that he promised thousands of dollars in permanent drug price reductions to is the latest desperate attempt from President Trump to distract from the fact that his Administration has broken every promise they’ve made on this issue for the past four years,” said Eli Zupnick, spokesman for Accountable Pharma.

“President Trump has been in office almost four years now and all we’ve seen is an Administration filled with drug industry lobbyists and executives, empty rhetoric and broken promises, and absolutely no meaningful action to take on the drug industry or reduce the costs of prescription drugs.”

Trump keeps making his big prescription drug promises: “Drug prices will be coming down 50, 60, even 70%”

And he keeps lying about the impact of his policies on prescription drug costs, saying over the summer: “I am lowering drug prices massively, 50% and more!”

But patients and families know the truth: “Prices for prescription drugs continue to rise, even during a pandemic.”

President Trump Has Been Making Promises On Drug Prices For Years . . .

  • February 4, 2020: “I was pleased to announce last year that, for the first time in 51 years, the cost of prescription drugs actually went down.”
  • July 5, 2019: “We’re going to be announcing something very shortly …  We’re working on a favored nations clause, where we pay whatever lowest nation’s price is. Why should other nations, like Canada — but why should other nations pay much less than us?  They’ve taken advantage of the system for a long time — pharma. So we’re working on, right now, a favored nations clause, so that whatever the lowest nation is, anywhere in the world — or company — but the lowest nation or company.  Then what happens is we will pay that amount, and that’s being worked on right now.  We’re going to do it in the form of an executive order.”
  • April 24, 2019: “Many drug companies are giving European countries a better deal than they give their own country.  And that has to stop.  We’ve already informed them that’s stopping.”
  • February 6, 2019: “It’s unacceptable that Americans pay vastly more than people in other countries for the exact same drugs, often made in the exact same place. This is wrong, this is unfair, and together we will stop it — and we’ll stop it fast.”
  • January 23, 2019: “I just had a meeting on drug pricing and various other things.  And prescription drugs, for the first time in history — the history of our country — have gone down in 2018.”
  • October 25, 2018: “This really is an important day for me.  I’ve been talking about drug price reductions for a long time.  And now we’re doing things that nobody was, let’s say — because I’m speaking on behalf of all of us — bold enough to do.  And they’re going to have a tremendous impact. . . . We’re fighting for lower drug prices, which will now be automatic.  It will be automatic and very substantial.”
  • March 19, 2018: “You’ll be seeing drug prices falling very substantially in the not-too-distant future, and it’s going to be beautiful.”
  • January 30, 2018: “One of my greatest priorities is to reduce the price of prescription drugs…I I have directed my administration to make fixing the injustice of high drug prices one of our top priorities for the year. And prices will come down substantially—watch.”
  • February 28, 2017: “[I will] work to bring down the artificially high price of drugs, and bring them down immediately.”

MEANWHILE: Drug Prices Have Continued To Soar…

  • Los Angeles Times: “Vaccine maker got $1 billion from taxpayers. Now it’s boosting drug prices.”
  • Politico: “Drug prices steadily rise amid pandemic, data shows.”
  • Politifact: “Donald Trump wrong again about prescription drug prices.”
  • HealthDay: “U.S. Drug Prices Have Risen Three Times Faster Than Inflation.”
  • CBS News: “2020 is three days old and drug prices are already jumping.”
  • The Hill: “Survey: About 1 in 10 US adults rationing medicine in effort to lower costs.”

… As Drug Companies Rake In Record Profits…

  • West Health Policy Center: “New Analysis Finds Large Drugmakers Could Lose $1 Trillion in Sales and Still Be the Most Profitable Industry.”
  • Axios: “Health care CEO pay outstrips infectious disease research.”
  • Newsweek: “Big Pharma Companies Earn More Profits Than Most Other Industries, Study Suggests.”
  • FiercePharma: “How the 8 biggest U.S. pharmas enriched their shareholders in 2019.”
  • Axios: “Big Pharma is on a stock buyback spree.”
  • Axios: “4 pharma companies saved $7 billion from GOP tax law.”

And Industry Executives Fill The Top Levels Of The Administration

  • NYT: “Trump’s Vaccine Chief Has Vast Ties to Drug Industry, Posing Possible Conflicts.”
  • Reuters: “Trump chooses Gottlieb to run FDA; Pharma breathes sigh of relief.”
  • Politico: “Trump picks ex-pharma executive Azar to lead HHS.”
  • Politico: “Former drug industry lobbyist helps steer Trump drug plan.”
  • Politico: “Trump’s HHS secretary nominee boosted drug prices while at Eli Lilly.”


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